IEMA and GACSO cement their relationship

11th April 2014

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Claire Peters

Following the announcement in March that IEMA and the Global Association of Corporate Sustainability Officers (GACSO) would be joining together, members of both organisations gathered for an event to mark the beginning of the collaboration

The evening reception was held on 10 April at Stationers’ Hall in the City of London, with 70 IEMA and GACSO members gathering for an event entitled “A transformative collaboration for global sustainability”.

With support from event sponsor Ricoh, IEMA’s vice-chair, Richard Powell OBE, and GACSO’s chair, Stuart Poore, marked the joining together of the two membership organisations by signing a memorandum of understanding, which establishes the terms and intended actions of the relationship.

Opening the event, Poore outlined IEMA and GACSO’s collective ambition to ensure that sustainability is at the heart of every organisation. He told the audience that the GACSO board had complete confidence that, by joining with IEMA, the association would benefit from an increased profile.

Powell and IEMA’s chief executive, Tim Balcon, echoed Poore’s comments, each saying that IEMA had heeded members’ calls to ensure that corporate sustainability became a core focus of its future work and that the Institute had a responsibility to grow the profession.

GACSO founder Alan Knight OBE spoke about the business case for the merger, giving insight into GACSO’s origins and how, with IEMA’s leadership and resources, the association could expect to grow in size and influence.

Through roundtable discussions, those attending the event were able to directly hear the thoughts and aspirations of the members of both bodies on how they would like the collaboration to work. GACSO members had a platform to express how their careers can and should benefit from this new relationship, and how their role is crucial to IEMA’s vision to “transform the world to sustainability”.

With a plan of activity now in place for members of both organisations who work in sustainability roles, the IEMA and GACSO leadership were able to demonstrate what members can expect to benefit from and contribute to over the coming months and beyond.

IEMA and GACSO would like to thank Ricoh for its support of this event. For further updates on GACSO, go to or

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